Medicare Part D Coverage Gap (“Donut Hole”)
Medicare Part D plans have a Coverage Gap, which is a temporary limit on what your drug plan will
pay for prescription drug costs. If you do not receive a subsidy such as Extra Help from Medicare,
or aren’t enrolled in a plan that offers additional Gap coverage, the combined amount you and your
Part D plan spend on your Medicare Part D costs (not including premiums), determines if and
when you will reach the Gap. For 2017, that combined amount is $3,700.
While in the Gap, you will pay 51% of the cost for generic drugs, and 40% of the plan’s cost for brand
drugs in 2017. You leave the Gap when you spend a total of $4,950 in 2017. You then enter the ‘Catastrophic Coverage’ stage, where the cost of your prescriptions is usually lower.